United Israel Appeal

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United Israel Appeal is the principal link between the American Jewish community and the people of Israel.

United Israel Appeal, Inc. (UIA), is a wholly owned subsidiary of Jewish Federations of North America formerly known as United Jewish Communities UJC. UIA is the principal link between the American Jewish community and the people of Israel.


UIA is responsible for the oversight of funds raised by the Jewish Federations of North America UJA Annual campaigns in the United States for programs of UIA’s exclusive operating agent, the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI). An independent legal entity, UIA secures and monitors a grant from the U.S. State Department Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration funds for the immigration and absorption of Jewish refugees to Israel from countries of distress. It is with JAFI as its partner, that UIA helps U.S. Jewry to fulfill its ongoing collective commitment to contribute to and participate in the building of the Jewish State of Israel.

Allocation and evaluation[edit]

UIA allocates and evaluates the effectiveness of its funding to the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) continuously through UIA staff and volunteers on the ground in Israel.


The United Palestine Appeal was founded in 1925, to unify the fundraising efforts of Israel based organizations including the Jewish National Fund, Hadassah and Hebrew University. It was dissolved in 1930, but was brought back to life in 1936. In 1939, together with the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, it founded the United Jewish Appeal, and was its principal beneficiary.

UIA has been the main source of tax-deductible contributions from American Jewry to the people of Israel and was the primary source of funding for the Jewish Agency for Israel. By 1952 it became known as United Israel Appeal (UIA). In 1971, the Jewish Agency was reconstituted, and UIA's role in the Agency as representative of the U.S. fund-raising community was enhanced to encompass the monitoring as well as the transfer of funds. From its inception, UIA served as the sole American fundraising agency for the Jewish Agency for Israel, and provided a link between the American Jewish community and Israel.

These funds accounted for three-fourths of JAFI's annual operating budget. Due to the funding UIA provided, its board had influence on JAFI's policies, including representation on JAFI's Board of Governors and Assembly.

In 1999 Council of Jewish Federations, (CJF), United Israel Appeal (UIA), and United Jewish Appeal (UJA) merged into the United Jewish Communities (UJC) now known as Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA). UIA survived the merger as a wholly owned subsidiary of JFNA

Though UIA had the smallest operating budget of the three organizations involved in the merger, its power and land holdings in Israel surpassed both CJF and UJA's influence in Israel.


According to its most recent IRS 990 it distributed $350 million in 2007.


UIA's current chairman[when?] is Richard Bernstein of Miami, Bruce A. Arbit of Milwaukee was its most recent past Chairman.[1][2] Other past Chairpeople have included Richard Wexler of Chicago,[3] Bennett L. Aaron of Philadelphia,[4] Shoshana S. Cardin[5] of Baltimore, Dewey Stone,[6] Melvin Dubinsky, Jerrold C. Hoffberger, Irwin S. Field, Jane Fisher Sherman of Detroit,[7] Max Fisher[8] of Detroit, Norman H. Lipoff of Miami,[9] and Henry Taub of New York.[10]



  1. ^ "Richard Bernstein Steps into New Role as UIA Chair". Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  2. ^ "Wexler quits United Israel Appeal in dispute". Jewishreview.org. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  3. ^ "United Jewish Communities Founder To Step Down". Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  4. ^ "SPENDING IT; Seeking Unity in Jewish Giving". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  5. ^ "Shoshana S. Cardin | Jewish Women's Archive". Jwa.org. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  6. ^ LIFE - Google Boeken. Books.google.com. 1957-08-12. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  7. ^ "UIA Insights". Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  8. ^ Blankfort, Jeff. "How Max Fisher saved Israel in the Yom Kippur War | j. the Jewish news weekly of Northern California". Jweekly.com. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  9. ^ "Norman Lipoff, Of Counsel - Greenberg Traurig LLP". Gtlaw.com. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  10. ^ Experts. "Taub Center". Taub Center. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 

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